Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of trying to improve a website’s search engine rank to attract more people to it and ensure those people are provided with useful high quality information that solves their problems and answers their questions.
I was trying to think of a good analogy to explain what SEO is like and I came up with horse racing because I see many similarities.
For the purposes of this analogy:
- Trainers = SEO consultants
- Horse = your Website
- Jockey = your Webmaster and Content writers
- Racecourse = the Internet
- Search Engines = Official Handicappers
No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google – Google is so worried about people promising this that they’ve added a page about SEO to their website to make people aware of SEO’s that claim to guarantee rankings
This is just like a horse race because a Trainer (SEO) can help your Horse (website) become faster and more fit but they can’t guarantee the Horse (website) will win on the Racecourse (Internet) because they can’t control how much extra weight the Official Handicappers (Search Engines) will make the horse (website) carry
A good Trainer (SEO) can greatly increase your chance of getting top rankings in search engine results (winning the race) by reducing the odds from an initial 100:1 to 20:1
To do this the Jockey (Your Webmaster and content writers) needs to implement the Trainer’s suggestions and ride the horse (website) with skill and good strategy
A rogue cheating Trainer (SEO) can use all sorts of illegal tricks equivalent to drugging your horse (website) to try and win the race
Doing this is really risky because it can result in your website being banned from search engines which will give you a bad reputation.
- If the Jockey (Your Webmaster and content writers) carries out the Trainers (SEO Consultants) instructions well than the odds can be further reduced from 20:1 to 10:1*
After that you have to rely on some luck to win. The Internet has lots of competing websites all trying to get top search engine rankings and obviously all of them can’t be #1.
It’s not possible to guarantee top search engine rankings without doing something unethical just like a horse race where you can’t guarantee winning without bribing officials or giving your horse drugs
Note: * = Odds are an example only to give an idea of the effect an SEO can have on search engine rank. Obviously they cannot be exactly quoted eg: 10:1